City Department Heads Give Updates To City Council

The property located near the Broken Bow Fire Hall, known as College Estates Block 1 Lot 2, has been awarded to Premier Storage Inc. after the Broken Bow City Council accepted their bid of $65,100. The only other bid sent to the Council was for $61,555 from V Bar Trailer Sales.

On Tuesday, November 9 the Council also approved appointing JEO Consulting Group, Inc. as the City Engineer for 2022, appointing Steven Parr from JEO as the Street Superintendent, and approving the signing of the year-end certification of the City Street Superintendent.

Most of the meeting was spent receiving updates from the different departments. Below are breakdowns of each department update:

Dan Knoell, City Administrator

  • Been in position for approximately 18 months
  • City employees and department heads have had to deal with a lot of changes, have accepted and adapted to them extremely well
  • Changes have been extremely beneficial to the City
  • City operations are nearly $1M in the ‘black’

Craig Cranwell, Water/Wastewater Superintendent

  • Unable to attend, updates read by Dan Knoell
  • Worked on sewer systems through the past year, making fixes and conducting regular maintenance
  • Worked on multiple water main valves and water systems throughout the City

Darren Marten, Overseer of Streets/Parks

  • Began new position approximately a year ago
  • Department worked to stay under budget and succeeded
  • Dandelions were an issue this past year and sprayed for them as often as they could
  • Patched and repaired streets
  • Goals: Complete the sand volleyball pit at Melham Park

Blake Waldow, Electric Superintendent

  • Outages were reduced this year and larger outages were due to older underground lines which the department is working to replace
  • 15 of the poles in the City failed inspection and are being replaced. Many of those poles are wooden and have street lights on them
  • Bringing back yearly tests of the substation transformers after those tests had been suspended in previous years
  • Line crew is fully staffed
  • Goals: keep up on safety and replacing older equipment, have more wooden poles tested and replace ones that fail, work on N 9th street to Paulsen Road where multiple outages are more frequent

Megan Svoboda, Library Director

  • Wi-Fi Users: 2,736; Public computer users: 1,079; 518 total hours
  • Broken Bow Library patrons saved $362,778.34 last fiscal year borrowing non-digital materials from the Library
  • Programming
    • 156 in-person events
    • 65 outreach programs (mobile story times, visits to daycares and schools)
    • 113 virtual events
    • 3 drive-thru events
    • Library hosted 337 events
  • Use of the facility/materials
    • 808 library cards issued (new and re-issued)
    • 15,357 people visited the library
    • 1,813 items added to library collection
    • 18,050 items circulated
    • 7,020 digital items circulated
    • Multipurpose rooms/study rooms used 427 times
    • Library was open over 2,600 hours
  • Goals: increase patronage after Covid reduced patron numbers

Steve Scott, Chief of Police

  • Equipment updates continue including tasers, new body-worn cameras and in-vehicle cameras, laptops in patrol units, new weapons to replace outdated firearms which will include red-dot sights and new flashlights
  • Department has purchased two Ford Explorers that are expected to arrive April-May
  • Upstairs has been remodeled including new paint, carpet, and TV’s for virtual meetings
  • New evidence room has been a huge addition growing from 6×8 to 18×27
  • Goals: Looking to add additional training to the department after a new state law increased the mandatory training hours from 22 to 28, working on active shooting training.
  • In the future, would like to add a virtual simulator to the upper floor for training officers locally and from other departments

Kandi Peters, City Clerk

  • Almost a year since taking over the position
  • Working on clerk certification and additional training
  • Goals: Organize office to allow ease in finding documents

Jessica Owen, Deputy Clerk/Treasurer

  • Had software issues when first started, but now fixed
  • Goals: Organize office and learn from audit report on what the City can do better in the future

Andy Holland, Emergency Services Director

  • 343 ambulance calls to service
    • Thursday-Sunday are the busiest days
    • Busiest time of the year is August-November with multiple stand-by calls for football, rodeo, etc.
      • Nov: 8 calls
      • Oct: 49 calls
      • Sept: 50 calls
      • Aug: 25
    • 49 fire calls
      • 10 vehicle accidents
      • 2 confirmed structure fires
      • Sent firefighters to the Nebraska Panhandle to assist in fighting fires twice
    • “Volunteers make this happen”


The next Broken Bow City Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 23 at 6 PM.